Another step towards reparations!
Mularczyk: We turn to the US Congress
We count on your support in the fight for compensation from Germany
“We turn to the US Congress – committees, senators, and congressmen – for support in the action on war reparations from Germany. The US is the country that stands for justice and international order today,” stated Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk.
Poland addresses US Congress on reparations
At a press conference on January 10, 2022, Mularczyk conveyed that the following action of the Polish government regarding the internationalization of the issue of Polish war reparations claims from Germany would be to turn to the US Congress.
“Today, I want to inform you about another critical initiative related to the internationalization of the issue of reparations. Today, we are addressing the US Congress. We believe that the US is the country that determines the global order today, the key country regarding issues of respect for international order, human rights, the rule of law, and international justice,” he announced.
“This is why we are addressing committees of the US Congress, first and foremost, the Chairman of the Helsinki Commission of the US Congress, Senator Benjamin Cardin, Congressman Gregory Meeks, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee of Congress; Senator Robert Menendez, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee of the US Senate and Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, the co-chairman of the Polish-American Friendship Group,” Mularczyk further mentioned.
Germany has not compensated Poland for war losses
Mularczyk stressed that he counts on the support of the US side in “the issue of Poland’s claim for compensation for the consequences of World War II.”
“I want to emphasize that to this day, Germany has not compensated Poland for its war losses. Nor have Polish citizens received adequate compensation from the German state. We see here an absolute asymmetry in the treatment of the Polish state, as well as the citizens of our country after the Potsdam Conference, where the German state-provided benefits, under international agreements, to the states of Western Europe but also to certain international communities, of a compensatory nature, and towards the states – compensation,” he explained.
As he pointed out, Poland did not conclude any bilateral agreements with Germany on this issue, nor did it participate in any international format “during which war reparations would be paid to Poland.”
“For these reasons, we believe that it is highly crucial and vital to involve the US Congress in this issue and to inform US legislators, in particular as regards the Helsinki Commission, whose purpose and fundamental motive is precisely to respect the rule of law, democracy, and human rights; we believe that the Commission is the correct forum for discussion,” noted the Deputy Foreign Minister.
Mularczyk stressed that “after the end of the Second World War, Germany benefited from the Marshall Plan – which served to rebuild the German economy.” By contrast, he added, “Poland fell into the Soviet sphere of influence, which involved the massive exploitation of the Polish economy, with unfavorable coal agreements and the exploitation of the Polish state and society.”
“Unfortunately, the ‘Iron Curtain’ has made it impossible over the years to resolve this issue through dialogue. Today, however, there is nothing to prevent Germany from entering into dialogue with the Polish state. If they do not, then we will consistently seek justice in international forms,” announced the Deputy Minister.
International support camp
Mularczyk also recalled that the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs had addressed several international organizations on the issue, including the UN, the Council of Europe, and UNESCO, as well as 50 countries – members of the Council of Europe, NATO, and the European Union.
Asked whether it was possible to build a kind of support camp for the issue in the European Union itself, as some countries already have had some sort of experience with reparations, Mularczyk replied that he “sees such a possibility, such a perspective.”
“I think that with time, when this awareness that Polish actions are determined, that we are taking action in a very professional and consistent manner on many levels of international agencies, will lead to the building of a coalition of countries harmed by Germany by World War II, which, like Poland, have not received proper reparations,” said the deputy head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
On 1 September last year, a report on the losses suffered by Poland as a result of German aggression and occupation during World War II was presented. On 3 October, Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau signed a diplomatic note to the German side concerning war reparations. In it, Poland demands, among other things, compensation for material and immaterial losses of 6 trillion 220 billion 609 million zlotych and compensation for damages.
At the beginning of January this year, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs communicated that the German diplomatic ministry had responded to the Polish MFA’s note of 3 October 2022 concerning reparations for Polish losses suffered as a result of German aggression and occupation during World War II. According to the German government, the issue of reparations and reparations for war losses remains closed, and the German government does not intend to enter into negotiations on the matter.
For the original article in Polish, please see: https://wpolityce.pl/polityka/629519-mularczyk-zwracamy-sie-do-kongresu-usa-ws-reparacji